I was on a hunt through the photos uploaded on my computer so I could enter one in a blog candy contest hosted by smallpigpig on her blog, http://smallpigpig.blogs.splitcoaststampers.com/, when I found this photo. It is the perfect representation of spring in my home state of Oregon, largely because of the raindrops. But it respresents something else, as well. When I was growing up, my family would spend a Saturday in May participating in a local parade. My parents belonged to a car club for owners of 1955-1957 Ford Thunderbirds, and the club members would ride in the parade, tossing candy to the crowd. My sister and I would get new spring outfits - usually sundresses or matching shorts and t-shirts - and wear our new outfits while riding on the back of the family T-bird at 2 mph, our legs dangling on the seat where our parents rode. After the parade, we'd all head to the nearby farm of a family friend named Tom, where the car club would hold a barbecue. We'd go to the parade and barbecue rain or shine, and some years it poured! But mostly, I remember the smell of grilling meat - Tommy believed in charcoal only, no gas - and flowers blooming, particularly on the snowball bush in the backyard. Tom was a car guy, and the car clubbers would usually end up in the shop, talking and tinkering with whatever Ford - only Fords at his house - was parked there. Tom died of lung cancer 18 months ago, but his family waited until spring to hold a memorial barbecue, so people could come from all over the country. I took this photo that day, of cars Tommy had worked on over the years, including some from the old Thunderbird club, long since disbanded. The rain, the cars, the barbecue on that day in May were all a fitting tribute to a wonderful man.